Running At The Grand Canyon

Our 2011 event at, “5 Wonders Under 25 Minutes,” began on Sunday May 29th. Sekyen and I flew to Phoenix on Thursday to meet the One Mile Runner team. We then traveled about 4.5 hours to the south rim of the Grand Canyon. We had a sunset photo shoot planned after I took an easy run in the high altitude. On the run around the Canyon roads, I could feel the difference in my breathing at 6700 feet. During our photo shoot, we enjoyed a beautiful, pleasant night of weather. If you have never been to the Grand Canyon, when it gets dark – it really gets dark and makes it difficult to walk around (last buses come around at 8:30pm).

We finished the photo shoot at sunrise on Saturday and we could feel the weather begin to change as the winds were increasing. After getting up at 4am for the photo shoot, a good nap was in order to prepare for the race tomorrow. We relaxed Saturday afternoon watching the Grand Canyon IMAX film, playing cards, and getting final instructions from Charlie Olbrias from The Last Mile Racing Management Company as we had one of his summer interns with us on this trip. A “high wind advisory” was put into effect for the rest of Saturday, Sunday, and Monday. So we had another challenge at The Canyon from Mother Nature besides the high altitude. The One Mile Runner team met again in the evening before going over everyone’s responsibilities at sunrise on Sunday.

Sunday we all awoke at 4am and drove to the south rim and took a bus out to our finish line at Hermit’s Rest (the western most point on the south rim). The race begins at Pima Point and goes to Hermit’s Rest. The course is uphill at the beginning and downhill near the end before a nice flat finish. The race started at 6:30am at about 50 degrees. I finished the mile course in 4 minutes, 54 seconds, and 7/100ths of a second (4:54.07). We had two cameras videotaping the race on this holiday weekend, so please enjoy the short video of the race:



I wanted to thank the wonderful team all weekend. They did a superb job under difficult conditions! Our second race is scheduled on June 25th “across the pond” at Stonehenge in Wiltshire, England.

Time To Travel West For First Race

We are set to travel to Phoenix on Thursday where we meet the rest of the team. Then we drive up to Flagstaff, then onto the Grand Canyon. It is an exciting time as we launch our 4th event in 4 years.

“5 Wonders Under 25 Minutes” will again take us around the world to locations that will indeed be a challenge and an adventure. The series of “adventure miles” will begin this coming Sunday at the Grand Canyon. The mix of 6000 feet of altitude and dry conditions will be very different than my sea level and moist Florida training conditions.

We will be having two cameras rolling this weekend. We will indeed post a video of the race next week for you to check out. I will also be blogging multiple times each week right through our final race in Petra, Jordan in mid-September. We look forward to sharing what works and what does not during this event. And we look forward to hearing your thoughts whenever you have a question or a comment.

From Chennai to Tampa

We traveled to Tampa on Saturday to run the first mile of the May Classic and to use it as a time trial as we are now three weeks away from our first race at the end of May. It was great to practice with so many other runners and to go through my race preparation rituals along with visualization practices. I ran a sub-5 minute mile workout and then “ran in” one of my buddies who was participating in the 5K race.

At the end of the race, an Indian man came up to me and introduced himself – Easwara Moorthy. He went on to tell me that he participated in our Asian race in 2010 in Chennai, India and the experience inspired him to race again. Easwara recently moved to Tampa and now resides in the United States. He and his Citibank colleagues took part in the 5K race. For some of his colleagues, it was their first race and for one colleague, David, it was his first race since 1976. It was great to see the Citibank camaraderie in action as they all finished the race and vowed to race again…from left to right: Ming Kang, Dash Amitav, David Decker, me, and Easwara Moorthy.

We travel to Phoenix on May 26th to meet up with our race and support teams. Then we drive up together to the Grand Canyon for the first leg of “5 Wonders Under 25 Minutes.”

“5 Wonders Under 25 Minutes” Begins in 4 Weeks

We at are quickly approaching the beginning of our 2011 tour, “5 Wonders Under 25 Minutes.” Training has been on schedule as I just finished my 1/2 mile repeats at race pace. Usually I undergo a 3/4 mile time trial 3 weeks before my initial event. This year I thought I would join in on a race and use the first mile as my time trial. So this coming Saturday morning 5/7/11, I will be running at the The May Classic, It should be fun to race the first mile down Bayshore Drive in Tampa in preparation for The Grand Canyon at the end of May.